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The Ability To Drop Weight - Another Reason Everyone Should Compete

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Steve Freides

Staff
Senior Certified Instructor
Elite Certified Instructor
Thinking about all the people who ask about making changes in their body composition, it occurs to me that the exercise of making weight for powerlifting competitions has taught me a lot over the years. I don't know if I could explain what it is that I've learned, or if what I've learned would even be helpful to others because the process is somewhat individual.

I generally have to weigh in at about 6 lbs. less than my usual waking weight. It's not a ton of weight to drop, but learning how to get there a couple of times a year means I've figured out a few things, e.g., what really "clean" eating is for me, what I need to do that's "clean" and yet doesn't leave me without energy, and also doesn't leave me feeling starving all the time. I start about two weeks out, and lose about 2 lbs. per week, and get the final 2 lbs. by adding a water-shedding herbal supplement to my diet a few days out, and taking a hot bath right before the weigh-in.

For an upcoming meet, I need to be a little lighter because of differing weight class boundaries. With a little further to go in terms of dropping weight, I started about three weeks before the meet, and I'm down 2-3 pounds in the course of a week and still feel great. I'd actually have to say I feel _better_. The process is still the same - I'll leave a couple of pounds for the end, but the important point is that I'm able to shed 2-3 lbs. per week by changing my diet, and this is a repeatable process for me. I think that's a good exercise for anyone who needs to lose weight to go through. IMHO, it's important not just to say, "I'm going to try to ..." but to give yourself a goal, just like you might work to achieve the Simple goal of Kettlebell Simple and Sinister, and then be sure to monitor what you're doing so that you are making steady progress towards your goal.

-S-
 

ShawnM

Level 8 Valued Member
@Steve Freides- Thanks for writing that. When I used to compete in the 220lb class coming down from 245lbs was a nightmare. After a few years of that I started to eat more sensibly and naturally got to around 228lbs just by not shoving everything in my mouth. Like you, I was able to drop the last few pounds starting with small changes leading up to the day of weigh-ins.

I found a couple hot Epsom salt baths the day of were my best friends.
 

Jim Lauerman

Level 6 Valued Member
Steve,

I am not competing in anything but the principles you write apply to weight loss for any reason. I have struggled with my weight my entire life despite exercising often to excess.

This past May getting my body composition right became my only real goal. I have continued my strength training but moderated it to avoid the utter exhaustion I often felt which frequently led to over-eating.

But here’s the point: I have logged every single calorie-containing thing that I consumed since mid-May. I didn’t have any “rules” but found that the process of personal accountability taught me exactly why I have struggled with my weight.

Today I am 30 pounds less than in May and significantly stronger. I still need to lose another 25 or so pounds, but the process of logging and analyzing what I am doing will get me there.

Just “hoping” to lose weight doesn’t work. It takes a process, and accountability.
 

Wesker11

Level 6 Valued Member
Great post @Steve Freides! I've had a recent light bulb that is similar to your post.

I've documented my progress using the Slow Carb diet in another thread. I took myself from 21% body fat to 11%. For me it was a pretty sustainable diet, but not one I would want to stay on for forever. After getting down to 11%, I started a body weight program that was supposed to gain a little muscle on so I started eating more. Nothing crazy like a body builder would. I added milk, bananas, and rice back to my diet and in reasonable portions. Enough to put me 500-1000 cals over my TDEE. Well, unfortunately this was a failed experiment. Went in for a BodPod after 3 months and I jumped back up to 16% body fat and lost almost a pound of muscle. Now if I was using a barbell program, it would probably be a different story, but it led me to the following realization.

After the weigh in, I started back up the Slow Carb diet and immediately dropped 3 lbs in a week. This got me thinking that once I get back down to 11% I could alternate weeks of Slow Carb and weeks of bananas, milk, and rice. I can have foods that I really love and still maintain a sub 12% body fat level. :)

I think one would describe this as being metabolically flexible.
 

Steve Freides

Staff
Senior Certified Instructor
Elite Certified Instructor
@Wesker11, did your Slow Carb include a weekly cheat day? Either way, I think you might consider adding one additional cheat day and seeing what that does for you, rather than going for a +500-1000 calories surplus. I'm also guessing 250-500 calories/day surplus is plenty.

-S-
 

pet'

Level 8 Valued Member
Hello,

I do not know if there is a "magic diet" or not. To a certain extent, maybe all the diets work if we do not have medical constraints.

I just ended up a 18 / 5 fasting (which turned into 24h fasting). At the beginning, I lost 2kg. Then, even if I got back 1 - 1,5kg more, even if I was still running this diet. Basically, I did some "lean gain protocol" because my %BF did not move.

I did not starv or even be tired during this diet, including the first days. I just kept my regular routine. Maybe we have a "natural optimal weight", which is function of our physical activities.

Now, I oriented my routine towards free-diving and Russian martial art (Systema) activities. So I eat 3 times a day (breakfast, lunch, diner) and my weight remains perfectly stable. However, my performances are increasing

As long as we enjoy our diet (tastes, colors, etc...), this makes it sustainable - at least for me. Eating to reach a goal has not to be a constraint.

Kind regards,

Pet'
 

ShawnM

Level 8 Valued Member
@Steve Freides- It just helps pull more water out. A few MMA fighter friends of mine swear by it. I gave it a try and an hour later I dropped a pound. I can't speak to any actual science of the salts though.
 

North Coast Miller

Level 8 Valued Member
This thread made me recall when I used to wrestle in HS. Trying out for the JV spot in 9th grade I was picked among four candidates because I had the least weight to lose to hit the then lowest 98 lb class.

The day of my first match (I was selected that morning - the other boys were sent home) they had me put on the rubber shirt and two jackets, big wad of gum in my mouth, run around the gym spitting in a trashcan every lap for just over 2 hours. Unofficial weigh in I lifted up the elastic on the rubber shirt, cups of sweat dumped out onto the floor - had lost 3.5 lbs.

Facing one of the better programs in my county, I remember how white I looked in the mirror before going out, having had only a couple of oranges after the official weigh in. Got decked in under a minute - the spit was so thick I could barely swallow it.

It cost the team fewer points to have me lose a match than to forfeit the weight class. It took a few years for me to realize just how reckless/unethical my coaches were, but that was fairly common in the wrestling world of the day (1981). I won many matches by forfeit as so few teams could even field someone at that weight. IIRC there were actually more 98lb Varsity wrestlers than JV, which lets you know who had the most motivation for cutting weight.
 

Michael Scott

Level 7 Valued Member
Oh yeah, memories of the sauna suit, with a sweatshirt over & under......jogging around the gym to lose weight on match day......that was from 1982-1984. I remember that soon after my senior year that wrestlers were banned from competition if they were caught in a sauna at the YMCA during season, for health reasons.

This thread made me recall when I used to wrestle in HS. Trying out for the JV spot in 9th grade I was picked among four candidates because I had the least weight to lose to hit the then lowest 98 lb class.

The day of my first match (I was selected that morning - the other boys were sent home) they had me put on the rubber shirt and two jackets, big wad of gum in my mouth, run around the gym spitting in a trashcan every lap for just over 2 hours. Unofficial weigh in I lifted up the elastic on the rubber shirt, cups of sweat dumped out onto the floor - had lost 3.5 lbs.

Facing one of the better programs in my county, I remember how white I looked in the mirror before going out, having had only a couple of oranges after the official weigh in. Got decked in under a minute - the spit was so thick I could barely swallow it.

It cost the team fewer points to have me lose a match than to forfeit the weight class. It took a few years for me to realize just how reckless/unethical my coaches were, but that was fairly common in the wrestling world of the day (1981). I won many matches by forfeit as so few teams could even field someone at that weight. IIRC there were actually more 98lb Varsity wrestlers than JV, which lets you know who had the most motivation for cutting weight.
 

Antti

Level 9 Valued Member
I've always wondered a bit about the weigh-in in strength competitions. I don't really understand why it has to be so complicated and why some even have weigh-ins a whole 24 hours before lifting. I recently heard that there's at least one federation coming up, if not others, who have a weigh-in right after the deadlifts. That's the way it should be in my opinion.
 

Steve Freides

Staff
Senior Certified Instructor
Elite Certified Instructor
@Antti, that would certainly change things. Same-day weigh-ins are a big step closer to actual weight. Some folks drop a lot of weight for day-before weigh-ins.

-S-
 

Kenny Croxdale

Level 6 Valued Member
... and why some even have weigh-ins a whole 24 hours before lifting.

24 Hours

Allowing athlete's to weight in 24 hours prior to an event doesn't make sense.

It poses some possible health risks with lifters dehdyraating 20 to 30 lbs and then gaining it back in 24 hours.

I recently heard that there's at least one federation coming up, if not others, who have a weigh-in right after the deadlifts. That's the way it should be in my opinion.

The Way It Should Not Be

Having athletes weigh-in after the Deadlift makes no sense.

That means if a lifter weighed in right on the money, they would have to refrain from eating and limit any fluid intake for hours.

Lifter who's weight was right on the money would need to continue to weight in throughout the day, monitoring their body weight to ensure they remained in their weight class.

Having to weight in after the Deadlift would be a meet nightmare. Meet are long enough to begin with.

Re-weighting lifter after the Deadlift would be chaotic. Getting meet personnel together for the re-weight, having lifters line up for the re-weight, the time required to shift through their meet card, the time required for them to strip down one at a time to re-weigh.

In a re-weigh after the Deadlift, that would mean more paper work time would be required in moving lifter out of one weight class into another.

Most meets award a "Best Lifter" in the lighter and heavier weight classes. Coefficient's are used in determining the "Best Lifter".

A re-weigh after the Deadlift would mean the every lifter coefficient would need to be recalculated.

As someone who has put on local and state meets and assisted at National and World Powerlifting Championships, I can state that meets are somewhat like a three ring circus act.

Most meet have about 50 lifters. I put on a state meet once that had close to 100 lifters.

The process of re-weight each lifter would take at least one minute or longer. Thus, re-weighing 50 lifter would take close to an hour, 100 lifter would take close to two hours.

Reprocessing the result would require even more time.

Meet are long enough without making them longer. Adding more chaos with a re-weigh and having to reprocess paper work is senseless.

Whoever who has considered something like this has not though it through.

Kenny Croxdale



 

Steve Freides

Staff
Senior Certified Instructor
Elite Certified Instructor
some even have weigh-ins a whole 24 hours before lifting.
FWIW, it's not 24 hours, it's usually at end of the day before the lifting starts, so 16 hours-ish. The WNPF meets I've lifted at have a 5 -6 PM weigh-in option the day before the lifting, and the lifting starts at 9 or 10 in the morning.

-S-
 

Antti

Level 9 Valued Member
24 Hours

Allowing athlete's to weight in 24 hours prior to an event doesn't make sense.

It poses some possible health risks with lifters dehdyraating 20 to 30 lbs and then gaining it back in 24 hours.



The Way It Should Not Be

Having athletes weigh-in after the Deadlift makes no sense.

That means if a lifter weighed in right on the money, they would have to refrain from eating and limit any fluid intake for hours.

Lifter who's weight was right on the money would need to continue to weight in throughout the day, monitoring their body weight to ensure they remained in their weight class.

Having to weight in after the Deadlift would be a meet nightmare. Meet are long enough to begin with.

Re-weighting lifter after the Deadlift would be chaotic. Getting meet personnel together for the re-weight, having lifters line up for the re-weight, the time required to shift through their meet card, the time required for them to strip down one at a time to re-weigh.

In a re-weigh after the Deadlift, that would mean more paper work time would be required in moving lifter out of one weight class into another.

Most meets award a "Best Lifter" in the lighter and heavier weight classes. Coefficient's are used in determining the "Best Lifter".

A re-weigh after the Deadlift would mean the every lifter coefficient would need to be recalculated.

As someone who has put on local and state meets and assisted at National and World Powerlifting Championships, I can state that meets are somewhat like a three ring circus act.

Most meet have about 50 lifters. I put on a state meet once that had close to 100 lifters.

The process of re-weight each lifter would take at least one minute or longer. Thus, re-weighing 50 lifter would take close to an hour, 100 lifter would take close to two hours.

Reprocessing the result would require even more time.

Meet are long enough without making them longer. Adding more chaos with a re-weigh and having to reprocess paper work is senseless.

Whoever who has considered something like this has not though it through.

Kenny Croxdale



I don't think of it as another weigh-in. Just the only one.

I can understand that it could be a hassle to operate. But in my opinion it could be worth it. That way we would get the true lifting weight of a lifter without any weight loss gimmicks.
 

Kenny Croxdale

Level 6 Valued Member
QUOTE="Antti, post: 146331, member: 3515"]I don't think of it as another weigh-in. Just the only one.

I can understand that it could be a hassle to operate. But in my opinion it could be worth it. That way we would get the true lifting weight of a lifter without any weight loss gimmicks.[/QUOTE]

Post Deadlift Weigh In

It make NO sense no matter how you spin it.

I provide you with the reason why it makes no sense above.

How would you propose to resole some of those issues.

Only One Weight In

Only one weight would create other issues.

1) You have NO idea of who was lifting in your weight class nor will the official until the end of the meet.

Knowing who is in your weight class, determines your weight choices for 2nd and 3rd attempts based on what you opponent succeeded with; that is especially true in the 2nd and 3rd Deadlift attempts.

How do you make choices when you are not sure who is in your weight class?

2) Lightweight lifter finish earlier than heavy weight lifters. This would afford lighter lifter enough time to use Sauna Suits (Sauna's if available), hot showers, etc. prior to the Post Weight In.

3) The Rules clearly state that if two lifter total the same, the lighter lifter is the winner of that placing.

Pre-Weigh In ensure lifter are aware of their body weight and their opponents body weight. Their weight selection especially in the Deadlift (in a dead heat with your opponent) comes down to either pulling enough weight to tie your opponent (if you are lighter) to win or having to pull/out out total your opponent (if you are the heavier lifter in the class).

I doesn't happen often but it does happen. I have moved up a place in two meets because I was lighter lifter and tied my opponent. I also dropped a place because I was heavier on the tied total.

That option is out with the Post Weight In. It leaves you with two solutions:

1) Out total everyone you "Think" (who knows) is in your weight class.

2) Start to IMMEDIATELY dehydrate after your final Deadlift.

Creating More Problems

No sane organization would ever consider a Post Weight In.

Post Weigh in would create more problem that it solves; a fact not an opinion

Kenny Croxdale
 
Last edited:

Kenny Croxdale

Level 6 Valued Member
FWIW, it's not 24 hours, it's usually at end of the day before the lifting starts, so 16 hours-ish. The WNPF meets I've lifted at have a 5 -6 PM weigh-in option the day before the lifting, and the lifting starts at 9 or 10 in the morning.

-S-

No So

Some lifting organization allow weight ins Friday morning starting at 9 am before a Saturday Meet.

Most meets are scheduled to start at 9 am. Thus, light weight class lifters who weight in Friday at 9 am would have at least 24 hours.

Some meet break the day up into Light Weight and Heavy Weight Sessions. Light Weights in morning with Heavy Weights in the afternoon.

Thus, Heavy Weight Lifter might not start until 2 pm. That would provide them with 29 plus hours to rehydrate.

While it's 16 hours for your WNPF, it's not the way for some of the other organizations.

With that said, even 16 hour is a long time; allowing your to rehydrate.

Heavyweight lifter have even longer since they lifter later than Lightweights. How much longer is dependent on other factors.

Kenny Croxdale
 

Antti

Level 9 Valued Member
QUOTE="Antti, post: 146331, member: 3515"]I don't think of it as another weigh-in. Just the only one.

I can understand that it could be a hassle to operate. But in my opinion it could be worth it. That way we would get the true lifting weight of a lifter without any weight loss gimmicks.

Post Deadlift Weigh In

It make NO sense no matter how you spin it.

I provide you with the reason why it makes no sense above.

How would you propose to resole some of those issues.

Only One Weight In

Only one weight would create other issues.

1) You have NO idea of who was lifting in your weight class nor will the official until the end of the meet.

Knowing who is in your weight class, determines your weight choices for 2nd and 3rd attempts based on what you opponent succeeded with; that is especially true in the 2nd and 3rd Deadlift attempts.

How do you make choices when you are not sure who is in your weight class?

2) Lightweight lifter finish earlier than heavy weight lifters. This would afford lighter lifter enough time to use Sauna Suits (Sauna's if available), hot showers, etc. prior to the Post Weight In.

3) The Rules clearly state that if two lifter total the same, the lighter lifter is the winner of that placing.

Pre-Weigh In ensure lifter are aware of their body weight and their opponents body weight. Their weight selection especially in the Deadlift (in a dead heat with your opponent) comes down to either pulling enough weight to tie your opponent (if you are lighter) to win or having to pull/out out total your opponent (if you are the heavier lifter in the class).

I doesn't happen often but it does happen. I have moved up a place in two meets because I was lighter lifter and tied my opponent. I also dropped a place because I was heavier on the tied total.

That option is out with the Post Weight In. It leaves you with two solutions:

1) Out total everyone you "Think" (who knows) is in your weight class.

2) Start to IMMEDIATELY dehydrate after your final Deadlift.

Creating More Problems

No sane organization would ever consider a Post Weight In.

Post Weigh in would create more problem that it solves; a fact not an opinion

Kenny Croxdale

I can, again, understand that it would be a hassle. That is very clear to me.

The question is whether it is worth the hassle or not. In your opinion, clearly not. Myself, I am not certain of it.

If I were to run an amateur lifting contest without any federations, I would simply have a scale by the platform and have the lifer step on it right after his final deadlift, with all gear on. As simple as that. That would be the only weigh-in happening.
 

Shawn90

Level 5 Valued Member
Im currently trying to cut back in calories which isnt easy. usually im at about 3.000 kcals trying to get dow .to 2700 kcals daily (avarage) but my body really fights this.

id guess my bf is about 15% but i dont know for sure. like to lose about 2kg fat and get back to my percentage.i had in 2016 :)

but thats just for aesthetics
 
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